Nebraska Police Chase Down Man Video Recording Their Abuse While Second Man Video Records It All


Omaha police displayed an unbridled street gang brazenness when they chased a man who was video recording them abusing his brother into a private home, confiscating his phone and arresting him to ensure their actions would never see the light of day.

However, another citizen captured the entire incident on video from a second-floor window, ensuring at least the façade of an internal investigation. 

Police also arrested a third brother inside the home they entered without a warrant, not to mention they knocked over a woman in a wheelchair.

Police claim the woman in the wheelchair was knocked over by Juaquez as he ran from officers.

Regardless of who knocked her over, police had no right to chase Juaquez into the homewithout a warrant when all he was doing was video recording them from across the street.

He was charged with disorderly conduct and obstructing police. No mention of his video is made in any of the local news stories of the incident.

His brother, Octavious Johnson, the man police were initially arresting, was charged disorderly conduct, resisting arrest, obstructing police and reckless driving.

The third brother arrested, Demetrius Johnson, was charged with obstructing police and an outstanding warrant.

According to KMTV:

The family says officers demanded the phone but when Juaquez ran into the house to put it away, police rushed in throwing Sharon Johnson out of her wheelchair. Sharon says, “He came in and ran and he took my chair and he throws it up and just threw me back.” But a police report obtained by Action 3 News shows Johnson was pushed out of her wheel chair by Juaquez as he ran from officers. Sharon says, not true. “Other police officers just climbed over me and just start going over this way and jumping all over him.” said Sharon.

Johnson says police handcuffed her for a short time, arrested Juaquez and took his cell phone. The Omaha Police Department released this statement: “Chief (Todd) Schmaderer has authorized an internal investigation into the incident. The Omaha Police Department expects professionalism from all employees…there will be a comprehensive investigation into this incident….any violations will be addressed.”

The man who video recorded the incident, Michael Lynch, did an excellent job of capturing the entire scene, which shows police ordering Octavious Johnson to stand against a truck to arrest him after a dispute over a tow truck trying to tow cars from that block.

Octavious wasn’t physically challenging the officers but one officer wrapped his arms around his neck and threw him down to the pavement, then began punching him.

Juaquez Johnson began yelling, “that’s bullshit,” to protest the aggressive actions against his brother, which prompted another officer to start holding him back.

Juaquez wasn’t being combative with the officer but the video shows he was trying to get closer to the altercation as if to record it.

He can be heard saying something like “I’m just taking pictures” at around :21 in the video.

The officer walks him to the sidewalk and Juaquez makes it clear that he is not going to get any closer than the sidewalk but continues to ask, “why you hit him?”

The cop walks back up to him, which causes him to start retreating on the sidewalk, saying, “I don’t feel comfortable with you walking up.”

When the cops walks back towards the street, Juaquez walks back to the same area on the sidewalk where he keeps telling them “that’s abuse” and “get your knee off of his head.”

However, he is very careful not to stand on the street to give the impression that he might physically interfere with the two officers who are on top of his brother.

At 2:18, more cop cars pull up to the scene with sirens wailing and that’s when they start chasing Juaquez into the home.

At least six cops run into the home and eventually lead the two brothers out in handcuffs.

According to KPTM:

Police say they were called out to the area for a parking complaint when the response escalated to a disturbance.

A nearby witness captured the dispute on cell phone video, which is now circulating on You Tube.

“It was just a spur of the moment thing, like I just started recording and everything happened,” said Michael Lynch. He took the cell phone video across the street, upstairs.

In it, you see police throw 28- year-old Octavius Johnson to the ground and throw punches minutes later.

Octavius described, “He went around my neck, threw me on the ground, choked me out to the point where I couldn’t breathe or speak.” He continued, “The officer told me to stop resisting, punched me in the face and said ‘do you want to die today’.”

You also see his brother, Juaquez Johnson, nearby recording his own video, according to family. Lynch said he stayed inside while recording after he said police didn’t seem happy that Juaquez was recording.

The local news stories do not specify whether police returned Juaquez’s phone but considering that video is nowhere to be found on the internet, we can safely assume it’s been deleted.

Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer, who took over in August 2012, vowed to “get to the bottom of this.”

Call him at (402) 444-5600.

About Carlos Miller

Carlos Miller is founder and publisher of Photography is Not a Crime, which began as a one-man blog in 2007 to document his trial after he was arrested for photographing police during a journalistic assignment. He is also the author of The Citizen Journalist's Photography Handbook, which can be purchased through Amazon.

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  • Jon Morrell

    Every EMT, firefighter, first responders and the police, city, county or state all give an oath to the constitution of the United States, just like the military. It’s their duty to uphold that constitution. If in fact the day comes when our soil is attacked by a foreign nation with boots on the ground, they and any other able bodied man or women will become part of that well-armed militia. In fact our own military is prohibited from using that sort of force on our soil. So when foreign troops are called in to enforce Martial law it will be the end of America as we know it. There’s a group called Oath Keepers, everyone with a conscience should look it up. The fact that these bad cops on videos show that not everyone believes in the constitution. It will be up to you, me and everyone else who truly loves the country we live in to defend it from government tyranny! That GT is the local justice system, the feds, most certainly POTUS, HLS, TSA, FEMA, BP

  • stk33

    Here’s the followup, one year later – assembled from various publications.

    The Omaha Police Department has concluded an internal investigation of a case that began with a rough arrest in a chaotic confrontation last March. A total of six officers have been relieved of duty.

    One officer was relieved of duty on April 4th, 2013. Three Omaha Police Officers were relieved of duty on April 5th, 2013 and all have subsequently been terminated.

    A fifth officer was recommended to be terminated January 8th, 2014 and a sixth officer was recommended to be terminated January 9th. The last two are now awaiting pre-termination hearings.

    Two officers, Aaron Von Behren and James Kinsella, were fired and criminally charged.

    the Johnson family, with help from the ACLU, filed a lawsuit in federal court alleging excessive force and a warrant-less search and seizure were used in response to the incident. A trial date is tentatively set for September 2015.

    Canterbury (the cop who started the assault by grabbing Octavius Johnson by the neck, putting him on the ground, and beating him up) got his job back. Two others — John D. Payne and Dyea Rowland — are awaiting an arbitrator’s decision on whether they will be reinstated. Three others — Von Behren, Kinsella and Justin A. Reeve — didn’t contest their terminations.
    But for a few hours behind bars, former Omaha police officer James Kinsella didn’t spend much time on the other side of the law. He walked out a (mostly) free man. Douglas County District Judge Peter Bataillon sentenced Kinsella, 32, to one year of probation for two reduced counts of obstruction of a government operation.

    After a melee erupted outside and inside the home of Sharee Johnson on March 21, 2013, Kinsella seized the phone of Demetrious Johnson. Authorities say Demetrious Johnson had been trying to record officers in the Johnson home but was unable to because he was toppled by a rush of officers. Officers say Kinsella seized Johnson’s phone and looked for a video but couldn’t find any.

    Kinsella then took out the memory card and eventually threw it away.

    His attorney tried to explain why.

    “He gets there, and he finds a melee,” Fabian said. “He does what he’s directed to do: secure a residence. He retrieves the cellphone. He determines that there is no video on the phone.

    “Because he’s angry, he decides, ‘I’m going to take this memory card and stick it in my pocket.’ It was done out of frustration,” Fabian said. “He made a comment, ‘He won’t be using this any more.’ ”

    Prosecutors dismissed charges Monday against a former Omaha police sergeant accused of orchestrating the stories of officers involved in last year’s controversial arrests of three Omaha brothers.

    Aaron Von Behren had instructed his team to not discuss one officer’s theft of a memory card from the phone of Demetrious Johnson, who had attempted to film police as they rushed into the Johnsons’ home, authorities say.

    prosecutors had a few obstacles in prosecuting Von Behren. Much of the information gleaned about Von Behren’s instructions came from an Omaha police internal affairs investigation, Kleine said.

    By law, authorities cannot use any admissions or statements made in such internal investigations because officers don’t have the right to refuse interviews with their supervisors.

  • Rodney Jackson

    I wore a Badge from 1975 to 1995 and Served on a Total of (5) Police Jurisdictions.
    I’ve Arrested over 1,600 People and have Never Abused or Killed anyone

  • ironargonaut

    How many times have you looked the other way? How many times have you reported officers lying? Answer truthfully.

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